TOURNAMENT PREVIEW: 2019 NCAA Division II East 1 Softball Regional

TOURNAMENT PREVIEW: 2019 NCAA Division II East 1 Softball Regional

NCAA Division II East 1 Regional
May 9, 10 & 11
Hosted by Saint Anselm College
South Athletic Fields
Manchester, N.H. 

 #1 Saint Anselm  #4 Georgian Court  #5 Southern N.H.  #8 Bridgeport

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MANCHESTER, N.H. – Saint Anselm College, the top seed in the East Region, will host one of the two regional pods for the 2019 NCAA Division II East Region Softball Championship beginning on Thursday, May 9.

The Hawks, ranked 24th in NCAA Division II, will take on the eighth-seeded Purple Knights from the University of Bridgeport at high noon on Thursday at the South Athletic Fields. Southern New Hampshire, the fifth-seeded program, will take on fourth-seeded Georgian Court in the contest to follow at 2:30 p.m.

Friday will feature three games and the winner of the East 1 pod will be crowned on Saturday. The winner will advance to battle the victor from the East 2 pod in the Super Regional with a trip to the NCAA Division II National Championship on the line.


Printable Bracket

Thursday, May 9 
Game 1: No. 8 Bridgeport 1 vs. No. 1 Saint Anselm 3 (Box Score)
Game 2: No. 5 Southern N.H. 4 vs. No. 4 Georgian Court 2 (Box Score)

Game 3: No. 5 Southern N.H. 0 vs. No. 1 Saint Anselm - 5 (Box Score)
Game 4: No. 8 Bridgeport 6 vs. No. 4 Georgian Court 11- (Box Score)
Game 5: No. 5 Southern N.H. 7 vs. No. 4 Georgian Court 0 - (Box Score)

Saturday, May 11 
Game 6: No. 1 Saint Anselm vs. No. 5 Southern N.H. - 12:30 p.m. (Live Stats | Video)
Game 7: Winner Game 6 vs. Loser Game 6 - 3 p.m. (If necessary)

Patron/Ticket Information

  • $5 for adults
  • $2 for children (ages 12 & under), students and senior citizens
  • Tickets are only valid for the day of purchase. Tickets are good for one day only, but cover all games played on that day.
  • Directions to the venue can be found by clicking here.
  • The South Athletic Fields are a pet-free facility, including emotional support animals. Service animals are permitted.

Team Information


  • The Hawks enter the Championship ranked 24th in NCAA Division II, according to the latest National Fastpitch Coaches Association Division II Top 25 Poll. At one point during the season, the Hawks were the top-ranked team in NCAA Division II, the first time any sports program at Saint Anselm earned such distinction. They enter the tournament with a 37-8 record.
  • Saint Anselm earned the automatic bid after winning its first-ever Northeast-10 Conference championship by defeating the reigning two-time defending champs from Adelphi University, 4-3, in 10 innings on Saturday.
  • The Hawks are making their fourth NCAA Championship appearance. Saint Anselm is 10-7 (.588) in its previous three appearances. Last year, the Hawks made a run to the NCAA Championship series against the University of Southern Indiana. Saint Anselm rattled off eight-straight wins between the regionals and super regionals to advance to the NCAA Division II Championship game.
  • Saint Anselm has sprinted out to a 37-8 overall record, the second-most wins in team history behind last season's national runner-up squad (44-13-1). The Hawks are led by sixth-year head coach Jill Gagnon, who earned her second straight NE10 Coach of the Year award and became the all-time winningest coach in program history, now has 162 career victories at the Hilltop.
  • The Hawks pitching staff boasts the nation’s sixth-best earned run average (1.43) and the third-finest strikeouts-to-walk ratio (5.47) in the nation. As a team, Saint Anselm has 312 strikeouts, which is a single-season program record.
  • Offensively, the Hawks hit .292 on the year, slugging .394 and scored 206 runs. They also hit 22 home runs.
  • Saint Anselm is riding a 12-game winning streak and has won 22 of its last 23 games played.
  • Junior Morgan Perry (Bethany, Conn.), the unanimous NE10 Pitcher of the Year and NE10 Championship Most Valuable Player, has had a career-year to this point. She has 22 wins and 19 complete games and broke her previous single-season record of 184 strikeouts as a sophomore and now has 201 in 2019.
  • Perry has 435 career strikeouts, just the fourth-student-athlete in program history to eclipse that the 400 strikeout mark.
  • Ranked 15th in all of NCAA Division II in earned run average (1.38), Perry is joined by sophomore Courtney Fisher (Taunton, Mass.) in the nation’s top 25. Fisher, an NE10 Third Team honoree, has posted a 10-0 record in 15 starts in the circle, appearing in a total of 25 games.
  • Fisher had 49 strikeouts and only issued 11 walks, fanning a season-high six batters during an 8-0 win over Southern Connecticut State on Apr. 7 while striking out five batters at Saint Michael’s on Apr. 10 and at Bentley on Apr. 27.
  • Freshman Kylie Fitzpatrick (Danville, N.H.), who was the NE10 Defensive Player of the Year, has played in 33 games for the Hawks, primarily as the second basemen. She has posted a .301 and drove in 10 runs while scoring 11 times. She has not committed a miscue on defense to date.
  • Junior Shannon Colson (Rochester, N.H.), a NE10 First Team and a NE10 Championship All-Tournament team selection, has led the team in hitting this year with a .366 average, 56 hits, scored 32 times, and has swiped 21 bases. She has also driven in 14 runs. She has hit safely in 10 of the last 11 games. Earlier this season, Colson set the program record for stolen bases in her career and now has 69 over 134 games at the Hilltop.
  • On average, Colson fans once every 51 at-bats, making her the 13th-hardest batter in NCAA Division II to strike out.
  • Sophomore Lauren Washburn (Carmichael, Calif.) earned her first postseason accolade from the conference, being named to the First Team. She hit .341 with 31 RBI’s and scored 14 times. She had eight doubles, two home runs, and a triple, along with a slugging percentage of .462. Washburn has had nine multi-hit contests this year as well.
  • The team’s lone senior, Jordan O’Connor (New Fairfield, Conn.) ranks second on the team in hitting with a .346 average. She has posted nine doubles and five home runs, along with a team-high 34 runs batted in. She was named to the NE10 All-Conference Second Team.
  • O’Connor was clutch in the NE10 Championship over two games, hitting a three-run home run to break open 2-1 score to make it 5-1 in the sixth inning against New Haven on May 3, before sending the Hawks to victory in the NE10 Finals on May 4 with a walk-off two-run single in the 10th frame. O’Connor is currently riding a seven-game hitting streak with 12 hits and 11 runs batted in.
  • Junior Maggie Murphy (Scarborough, Maine) picked up Second Team All-Conference honors following a season where she hit .321, led the team with 36 runs scored and 13 doubles, drove in 17 runs and swiped 16 bases. She had an on-base percentage of .366 as well.
  • Sophomore Maddison Leite (Cumberland, R.I.) had a breakout year during her sophomore campaign. The NE10 Third Team selection batted .250 on the year and drove in 19 runs. She had a team-high six home runs and scored 21 times. She also had four doubles.
  • Freshman pitcher McKenna Smith (Old Town, Maine) has six saves, which leads the NE10 and ranks third in all of NCAA Division II. She also fanned 62 batters while only walking 13.


  • The Purple Knights are making their third appearance in the NCAA Tournament and first in 30 years after the team captured its first-ever East Coast Conference (ECC) Championship against LIU Post on Saturday. Bridgeport enters the double-elimination tournament with a 33-14 record.
  • The Purple Knights are led by Dawn Stearns, who is in her 10th year at the helm. She has a career-record of 176-290-1. She has led the team to the ECC Tournament three of the last four years and has had 20 or more wins in a season for the third-consecutive year.
  • The ECC’s tournament Most Outstanding Player, pitcher Amanda Staheli, picked up three wins in the tournament, two of them being shutouts. On the year, she posted a 19-5 record in 24 starts, with 20 complete games and seven shutouts. She had a 2.07 ERA and fanned 102 batters. She held opposing hitters to a .210 average in 159 innings of work.
  • Bridgeport is the top fielding team in the ECC, posting a .968 fielding percentage to rank 32nd among NCAA Division II institutions.
  • As a team, Bridgeport had a .302 batting average, scoring 237 runs and hitting 23 home runs. They also stole 62 bases on 69 attempts. The Purple Knights had nine hitters batting above .300.
  • Sophomore outfielder Kaira Ramon led the team with a .388 average while starting 42 of the team’s 47 games. She drove in 32 runs and scored 35 times, stealing 16 bases without being caught in 2019.
  • Shortstop Allison Luzzi, a junior, drove in 26 runs and had a team-best 20 doubles, ranking ninth nationally, and has logged a .372 batting average. She also hit five home runs and stole nine bases.
  • Senior outfielder Jenna DiLorenzo and junior third baseman Samantha Sabor each drove in a team-high 39 runs while DiLorenzo led the team with nine home runs. Both players hit above .300 and also had a slugging percentage of .490 or higher.


  • The Lions are led by fourth-year head coach Nicole Degenhardt, who has a 96-102 record with the school and a 129-162 in her seven-year coaching career.
  • The team has a 45-9 record entering the tournament and are receiving votes towards the NFCA Top 25 poll. Georgian Court earned an at-large bid after falling to the Wilmington (Del.) in the Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference (CACC) softball championship game on Saturday, May 4.
  • The Lions are making their ninth appearance in the NCAA Tournament and first since 2014. During the season, Georgian Court posted a 20-game winning streak and swept nine consecutive doubleheaders during that span.
  • The team has recorded the most victories in team history in 2019 while also earning the squad’s first NFCA national ranking since 2010. The regular season CACC title was also the first for the program since 2011.
  • As a team, the offense is hitting .315 in 54 games while scoring 382 times, averaging just over seven runs per game. The team has also hit 60 home runs to this point, ranking 15th in NCAA Division II with 1.11 home runs per contest.
  • The Lions have also swiped 127 bags on the year, averaging 2.35 per game to rank 15th in the country.
  • Junior first baseman Eryka Springer leads the team with a .387 average and has 11 home runs and 42 RBI’s, with a slugging percentage of .765.
  • Senior catcher Samantha Reilly is second on the team in hitting with a .362 average and a team-high 17 home runs and 58 runs batted in. Her 17 dingers ranks sixth in NCAA Division II and she draws walks at a rate of .73 per contest, ranking 15th in the country.
  • Freshman pitcher Mikayla Gilgert has a 17-6 record in 23 starts in the circle. She has eight complete games and 121 strikeouts to just 45 free passes. She has held batters to just a .218 average and has an ERA of 1.64. Gilgert also leads the team with six of the Lions’ 10 saves, tying for third in NCAA Division II.
  • Senior southpaw Jessica O’Neil is 18-2 in 21 starts in the circle with six complete games. She has 74 strikeouts entering the tournament and a 1.71 ERA.
  • On the base paths, sophomore outfielders Malaya Black and Caitlin Hughes have combined for 68 stolen bases, scoring 79 runs.


  • Southern New Hampshire is coming into its sixth NCAA Tournament appearance with a 36-13 record, receiving votes towards the NFCA Top 25 poll.
  • At one point during the season, the Penmen were winners of 22 consecutive games from Mar. 13 through Apr. 12. Since then, they have lost nine of their last 15 games, including a 3-1 defeat to Pace in the Second Round of the NE10 postseason.
  • Southern New Hampshire owns the nation’s second-best team earned run average (1.29), thanks to a pair of pitchers that rank among the nation’s best. Junior Maddy Barone has logged a 1.24 earned run average that stands as the ninth-best figure with sophomore Olivia Strasser checking in with the nation’s 19th lowest earned run average (1.40).
  • The team’s pitchers have posted a 4.60 strikeout-to-walk ratio and have completed 17 shutouts on the season, ranking in the top 10 nationally in each statistic. The squad has also hit only nine opposing batters, the sixth-fewest in NCAA Division II entering the tournament.
  • The offense was led by NE10 Player of the Year Erin Garczynski, who hit .426 to lead the team. She led the conference in batting average (.430), doubles (18), doubles per game (0.36), sacrifice flies (4) and slugging percentage (.702) while posting the second-most hits (65) and total bases (106).
  • Freshman Emily Carbonneau has slugged 11 home runs to date, leading the conference in long balls and home runs per game (0.22). Sophomore Emily Critch also had six home runs and drove in 26 runs for the Penmen.
  • Junior pitcher Gabriella Vachon led the team with three saves and had nine strikeouts in seven appearances.
  • Currently in her 14th season at the helm, head coach Deb Robitaille has posted a 376-248 record with the Penmen.

Media Information

Griffin Spencer
Director of Athletic Communications, Saint Anselm College
O: (603) 641-7810

Requests for working press credentials should be made directly to Griffin Spencer via e-mail prior to the start of the tournament. All credentials will be distributed on site. No credentials will be mailed. Specific questions can also be directed to Griffin Spencer via e-mail or phone.